Track Skill - Up-Skill while having the time of your life.
Motocraft's Paul Creevey takes to the track.
Some people only have track or race bikes, most only ride on the road; some of us do a bit of both. The Road Safety Authority are constantly promoting road safety for all vehicle classes. During a recent meeting with RSA Communications Manager, Brian Farrell, I was really impressed with the proactive nature of motorcycle safety initiatives to come.
The stats don’t lie. 66% of single vehicle motorcycle accidents when investigated are attributed to rider error. 92% of these have had zero rider training after passing their test. Braking, target fixation and being unfamiliar of how a motorcycle behaves at increased speeds are the leading factors.
Taking your motorcycle on track allows for some exploration of these areas in a safe environment. Combine the safe environment with a structured program, which is run over multiple days, provides consolidation and helps to enforce and engrave these skills.
I can’t remember the last time I had to do an emergency stop on the public road. It was probably on my test. And talking to a new rider recently, I learned that he prefers to just use the back brake “…as its smoother”; I didn’t even go there.
On Track in Spain
We’re just back from an amazing three days in Circuito Monteblanco, southern Spain, with 13 emergency braking situations per lap, the braking skills were well and truly honed and it becomes fun too! Becoming comfortable braking hard helps to train yourself to be more observant and aware of your surroundings too.
Another aspect of track riding is learning that the bike behaves differently when pushed and that its ok to let the bike ‘move’ under you, which if you’re not used to it can catch you off-guard and you can tense up and or freeze and or target fixate.
Running wide is a common issue too. Being too afraid to lean the bike over when just a few KPH too fast for what you expected. On a right-hander, its bad - On a left-hander, it’s worse! The risks are multiplied as you are now veering into other traffic.
The track permits gradual, safe and coached progress in this respect. Body position helps and having a structured plan for the corner is crucial. There’s never anything coming the other way and generally, novice group riding doesn’t allow overtaking in or approaching corners. This is why we actively encourage road-bikes.
One last thing about taking to the track… It’s amazing fun!
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